Where the child's interest inspires great work

Maitri Learning creates educational materials that are research-based, accurate, beautiful, durable, and usable. Maitri Learning was founded somewhat accidentally by a Montessori teacher who was trying to buy the perfect materials for her classroom and couldn't find them anywhere. Now, the materials she created (based specifically on the precise directions received in her AMI training) are used by Montessori teachers, parents, and teacher trainers around the world. We are named after the Buddhist word maitri which means 'having a compassionate, kind heart.' We keep the principle of maitri at the front of all of our business decisions.

When you order Maitri Learning materials you can be confident that you are receiving materials of the highest educational value. All of our materials are designed by a Montessori teacher and rigorously reviewed and tested by Montessori teacher trainers, teachers, and children before they are offered for sale. Our research-based materials contain exactly what you and your children need and nothing else. 

Maitri is a green, eco-friendly, fair-wage, right-livelihood, woman-owned business. We pay all of our employees at least $15/hour, which should be our country's national minimum wage. Our prices reflect these fair labor costs along with the higher costs of environmentally-sound paper, toxin-free laminate, and inks made without ozone-depleting substances.

Word Study

Compound Words: Word Study

$7.95 USD

Here are examples of language magic... when you put the word fly after the word fire, you get a whole new creature! Read these cards yourself to inspire your spoken la...
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Synonyms: Word Study

$7.95 USD

Cold or frigid. Happy or joyful. Splendid or marvelous. No two things are exactly alike...but they sure can be similar! That's what synonyms are all about: finding ano...
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Antonyms: Word Study

$7.95 USD

Deep and shallow. Hot and cold. Skinny and pudgy. Children love to play with opposites/antonyms and these cards let them do just that. Read these yourself to inspire y...
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Word Study Charts

$14.95 USD

These charts offer a whole new round of word study vocabulary ideally suited for memory, spelling, and dictation games. Read these charts to yourself to inspire your s...
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Masculine & Feminine: Word Study

$7.95 USD

Father and mother. Brother and sister. Fox and vixen. Rooster and hen. These cards let children consider the masculine and feminine roots of common words. Read these ...
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Animals and their Young: Word Study

$7.95 USD

Let's play a word game... I'm thinking of animals and their babies. Dog...puppy. Cat...kitten. This short little game is the perfect way to introduce the children to t...
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Animal Homes: Word Study

$7.95 USD

Let's play a word game... I'm thinking of animals and their homes. Bat ... cave. Beaver ... lodge. This short little game is the perfect way to introduce the children ...
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Animal Groups: Word Study

$7.95 USD

Let's play a word game... I'm thinking of animals and their groups. A flock of ... birds. A school of ... fish. This short little game is the perfect way to introduce ...
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Contractions: Word Study

$7.95 USD

What happens when you squish two words together to make a new, shorter word? Contractions! Read these cards yourself to inspire your spoken language games. Then, once ...
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Homonyms: Word Study

$7.95 USD

Spelling can make such a difference...just think of the sound-alikes bare and bear! Children love to play with word meaning and these cards let them do just that while...
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Word Study Card Set

$59.95 USD

Inspire your children to read and write with these fun word study activities! Introduce these after your children are reading words at the non-phonetic level (after no...
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Sale

Discounted Compound Words: Word Study

$7.95 USD $4.50 USD

These are just like our first quality Compound Word cards but there color is not coordinated with the rest of the word study materials (the dots are gray in the final ...
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Sale

Discounted Contractions: Word Study

$7.95 USD $4.50 USD

 These are just like our first quality Contractions cards but there color is not coordinated with the rest of the word study materials (the dots are salmon in the fina...
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Movable Alphabets

Traditional Movable Alphabet

$29.95 USD

Are your children able to hear all of the sounds in words when you play the Sound Game? Do they know their pink, blue, and green sandpaper letters? Can they tell you l...
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Phonogram Alphabet

$24.95 USD

Do your children get stuck on phonograms with the traditional movable alphabet? Not any more! Put the phonogram alphabet right alongside your traditional alphabet and ...
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Black Movable Alphabet

$29.95 USD

Ready to move one step away from the traditional movable alphabet? This black alphabet is just what you need. You can use it on its own but it is awesome when used in ...
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Red Movable Alphabet

$29.95 USD

Are your children writing words with the traditional (pink/blue) alphabet but starting to perfect their spellings? Then it's time for the red and black alphabets!  Usi...
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Spanish Movable Alphabet

$29.95 USD

Write your heart out in Spanish! This includes everything you find in our traditional Movable Alphabets plus 10 of the Spanish ñ, 10 of the dots for above the u (diaer...
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Alphabet Box

$9.95 USD

Get the dust out! These craft boxes have a transparent lid so children can easily see all the letters even when the alphabet lid is closed on the shelf. No more aversi...
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Box Tabs: Extra Dividers

$1.95 USD

Our craft box for the movable alphabet comes with 20 dividers. But, if you want more, no problem. Order an additional strip of five tabs. These come ready to cut so yo...
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Books

Montessori Language Approach by Muriel Dwyer

$7.00 USD

This is the essential guide to the Montessori approach to language education. Dr. Montessori originally developed her method for helping children to learn Italian, a ...
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Land & Water 1 Book

$12.95 USD

Bring your land & water forms to real-life with these beautiful photos. No more brown and blue line drawings! Now you can use real geographical locations to clearl...
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Leaf Shapes (Botany Cabinet) Book

$15.95 USD

Children love using cuticle sticks to trace the leaf shapes in the Traditional Botany Cabinet (sensorial) but sometimes it is hard for them to make the connection betw...
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Leaf Shapes Book & Card Set

$64.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of Leaf Shape materials including: Definition book 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plan included All materials in th...
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Land & Water 1 Book & Card Set

$49.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of Land &  Water 1 Materials including: Definition book (fully laminated) 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plan in...
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Land & Water 2 Book

$12.95 USD

Now you can use real locations to clearly depict the 10 advanced land and water geographic formations commonly included in geography bees. Fully laminated pages and c...
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Land & Water 2 Book & Card Set

$49.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of Land &  Water 2 Materials including: Definition book (fully laminated) 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plan in...
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"Parts of" the Ant Book

$12.95 USD

Have you ever really seen the jaws on these little opportunistic carnivores? This book lets the children check out the ant's tiniest anatomical details without getting...
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"Parts of" the Ant Book & Card Set

$49.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of "Parts of" the Ant materials including: Definition book 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plan included All materia...
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"Parts of" the Bird Book

$12.95 USD

I love the zebra finch featured in this book. He has the most lovely ear patches, don't you think? Scan through and discover each of the key parts of its external anat...
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"Parts of" the Bird Book & Card Set

$49.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of our "Parts of" the Bird materials including: Definition book 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plans included All m...
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"Parts of" the Butterfly Book

$12.95 USD

Haven't you always wondered what the proboscis looked like? Well now you and your children can look at that long, straw-like tongue for as long as you like. You can ev...
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"Parts of" the Butterfly Book & Card Set

$49.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of "Parts of" the Butterfly materials including: Definition book 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plan included All m...
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"Parts of" the Fish Book

$12.95 USD

This goldfish is so pretty...the colors are truly magical. Scan through and discover each of the key parts of its external anatomy. The photos include the featured par...
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"Parts of" the Fish Book & Card Set

$49.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of our "Parts of" the Fish materials including: Definition book 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plans included All m...
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"Parts of" the Flag Book

$12.95 USD

My son went through a time when almost every week he made a new flag that represented him and/or his friends. His flags had great symbols like fire, deer, and dragons ...
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"Parts of" the Flag Book & Card Set

$49.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of "Parts of" the Flag materials including: Definition book 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plan included This set f...
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"Parts of" the Flower (Dicot) Book

$12.95 USD

Check out the stamens on this beauty! You can just sense the pollen spreading and sticking to everything. These cards clearly show the difference between a stamen and ...
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"Parts of" the Flower (Dicot) Book & Card Set

$49.95 USD

This discounted set includes one each of "Parts of" the Flower (Dicot) materials including: Definition book 3-part photo cards Definition cards Lesson plan included ...
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"Parts of" the Flower (Monocot) Book

$12.95 USD

Check out the landing platform offered by these petal-like tepals! You can just imagine the insects walking right up to that pollen-covered stamen. Use these in the cl...
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Montessori Pedagogy Blog

Which font: Print, Italic, or Cursive?

When we begin our own primary (ages 3 to 6+) classrooms, we need to make a decision about our sandpaper letters and movable alphabet--which font do we choose? But, many of us inherit a classroom and must use the font we have. Or, we must follow the culture of our school so there is consistency from room to room. In any event, this is a topic Montessori guides consider deeply.

Unfortunately, I have not been able to find any specific, convincing studies that directly answer the question of which font is preferred. This is why Maitri Learning offers our movable alphabets in all three of the fonts commonly used for the sandpaper letters.

The question of font, however, has been indirectly answered.

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Fade and Observe

“Old Montessorians never die, they just fade and observe.”

- Author unknown

Hand washingI was observing in a primary classroom the other day when I saw an utterly enthralled 4-year-old boy doing the hand washing work. His hands were in the beautiful blue and white basin and he was smiling as he turned the water over and under each hand.

Soon he let out a sigh which apparently meant he was ready for the next step. He lifted his hands out of the basin, dried them on the towel, grasped the sides of the basin, and went to empty it. But into what? The perfectly coordinated pail was sitting ready for him on the shelf beneath the basin but it went completely unnoticed. Instead, the boy put the basin back on the table and placed the matching blue and white pitcher on the ground in front of the table. He then proceeded to meticulously pour the basin water into the wide-mouth of the pitcher! No easy task, let me assure you, yet very little water was spilled.

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Setting up the Environment (Primary)

I've been working with Libertas Public Montessori School in Memphis. One of our many projects is to open a new Primary class. So, I've been investing a great deal of time in looking at material suppliers, thinking about plants, and measuring heights for tables and chairs. Since I know I'm not the only one doing this work, I decided to post my thoughts and discoveries here so we can all benefit...and maybe get a few of you to post some replies!

Nature

Sometimes our space has many low windows that bring a gorgeous natural landscape right into our classrooms. Sometimes, we have cinder block walls up to a drop ceiling. We have to work with what we have but in all cases, we must prioritize the natural world. Not just because I say so, but because research shows that views of nature have significant effects on attention and learning. 

If you have windows with views of nature, showcase them. Put your easel right in front of them. Set many tables so that they look out on the vista. Banish your curtains and shades unless the sunlight is blinding.

If your windows look out on a parking lot or a busy walkway, hang half or quarter curtains. You want these at about 4-5' high and extending just to the window sill. The objective is to protect the child's attention by blocking unsightly or busy views while still letting in as much natural light and sky views as possible. Make sense? 

If you don't have windows, bring nature in. Get plants that will grow in the lighting you have,... lots of them. Give serious thought to a large fish tank or other pet terrarium. Minimize your use of fluorescent overhead lights and invest in lamps with those great bulbs that mimic natural light. (Be mindful of the cords, though. Keep those safely tucked away.) Build a canopy out of sticks. Get creative and find ways to make your classroom alive with the natural world. (Click on the photo for links to more ideas from childroots.)

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